|Arlington Park Barn Notes
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In today's notes:
Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Grant & Thomas J. Kelly's Evening Attire, two and three-quarter length victor in the Grade I Jockey Club Gold Cup September 28 at Belmont Park, arrived by van at Arlington Park at 4:30 Wednesday morning from New York. Evening Attire is being pointed toward a probable start in the Grade I Breeders' Cup Classic, to be contested October 26 at Arlington Park.
Another Patrick Kelly trainee, Fox Ridge Farm Inc.'s Riskaverse, who is a possibility for the Grade I Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf here on that same afternoon, arrived hours earlier at the local oval, also by van, from Lexington, Kentucky. Riskaverse won the Grade I Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup by a neck last Saturday.
The Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships, often called the "Super Bowl" of Thoroughbred Racing, come to Arlington Park and Chicago for the first time in their 19-year history on that last Saturday in October. Evening Attire's goal -- the $4 million Classic at a mile and a quarter -- is the richest Thoroughbred race run in North America, while the Filly & Mare Turf offers a purse of $1 million.
"Evening Attire's flight was cancelled," said trainer Kelly at Arlington Park Wednesday morning, "so he ended up coming by van, and Riskaverse came separately on a van from Kentucky."
Kelly, 54, son of Hall of Fame trainer Tommy Kelly, arrived in Chicago Tuesday night in advance of his potential Breeders' Cup pair.
"Both horses traveled well, and everything is quiet here," said Kelly outside his tack room in Barn 16. "Their temperatures are both good, they are eating well, and there is not much going on with them right now. We're just getting everybody settled in. We did no training with either of them.
"We will probably give Evening Attire a little leg stretcher early next week," said Kelly, "but Riskaverse just ran and her schedule is day-by-day right now.
"Evening Attire is a good cold weather horse," said Kelly, in reference to a chilly wind Wednesday morning on the Arlington backstretch. "He once won a race in the snow."
Kelly, who saddled half-brothers Solar Splendor and Sultry Song to back-to-back Grade I victories in Belmont's Man o'War and Woodward respectively on the same day 10 years ago, will remain at Arlington through Friday. He will return to New York and Belmont this weekend, but come back to Chicago late Sunday night.
Cliveden Stud's Fraulein, who was a candidate for the Grade I Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf at Arlington Park October 26 before being retired earlier this week, left the local oval early Wednesday morning for Lexington, Kentucky, where she will begin preparations for a new career as a broodmare.
"The filly left at 5:30 this morning," said Tracy Johnson, an assistant to British trainer Edward Dunlop. Johnson traveled with exercise rider Peter Boothman along with the European campaigner Fraulein to North America. Fraulein and her handlers stopped in Canada long enough to win the Grade I E. P. Taylor at Woodbine before journeying on to Chicago for her now-cancelled appearance in the $1 million Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf.
"She is not going to be sold," said Johnson, who will return to England along with Boothman on a flight from O'Hare International Airport Wednesday night. "She will be covered at Middlebrook Farm and then sent back to England. We do not know yet who she is going to be bred to."
"We don't know yet, either," said a representative of Middlebrook, speaking over the phone from the Lexington farm when asked about Fraulein's prospective suitor. "We just found out that she was coming here. We'll know more later in the week."
Joseph Graffeo's Two Item Limit, a candidate for the Grade I Breeders' Cup Distaff October 26 at Arlington Park, listens to a compact disc entitled "Classical Music to Sleep By" when trying to relax between her more serious assignments on the racetrack.
The $2 million Breeders' Cup Distaff is one of eight championship races that will be offered when the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships come to Chicago for the first time in their 19-year history on that last Saturday in October.
"The hardest thing right now is to keep her feet on the ground," said trainer Steve DiMauro's assistant Mike O'Neill Wednesday morning at Arlington Park, speaking of the filly who breezed six furlongs Monday in 1:12 4/5 and will breeze again next Monday. "That's why we play classical music for her. She likes it. Look at her. It relaxes her.
"She begins to anticipate things when she has a big race coming up," said O'Neill of Two Item Limit, who was a four-length winner of the $42,000 Unique Type Handicap at Arlington Park September 14.
O'Neill had said earlier in the week that Two Item Limit, who was third, beaten only a length and a half, in the Breeders' Cup Distaff last year at Belmont Park, seemed to be relaxing better recently in Chicago than she did in New York.
Arlington Park will offer three stakes races on Friday, October 25, one day before the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships come to Chicago at Arlington Park for the first time in their 19-year history.
The third running of the $100,000 Estrapade Handicap, the second running of the $100,000 John Henry Handicap and the inaugural running of the $100,000 Gilded Time Stakes will all be contested that Friday, which will have a first post of noon.
Among those considered likely for the Estrapade, for fillies and mares at a mile and a sixteenth on the grass, are Joseph Platt Jr.'s Babae; John & Kris Richter & John Allan Richter's Bien Nicole; and William J. Betz' Coney Kitty.
Other Estrapade probables include Catherine Wills' Mythic; M375 Tbreds Inc.'s Platinum Tiara; The Thoroughbred Corp.'s Stylish; George Strawbridge's Totally Cosmic; and Jess Rutledge's Twilight Tryst.
Possible Estrapade starters include Frank C. Calabrese's Golden Antigua; Gary A. Tanaka's Histoire Sainte; Carl F. Pollard's Kiss The Devil; and McKee Stables' Sitka.
Considered likely for the John Henry at this time are Alan Drey's Bahroba and Sondra D. Bender's La Reine's Terms. The John Henry is for 3-year-olds and upward and will be run at a mile and three-sixteenths over Arlington's turf course.
Probable starters in the Gilded Time, for 2-year-olds at seven furlongs, are Overbrook Farm's duo of Boston Park and Desert Warrior; Stonerside Stable LLC's Catalissa; T. Starr Porter's Battle Tank; and Dan Butler, Mike Meore & Wesley Ward's Omega Code.
Possibles for that juvenile extended sprint include John R. Parker's Cat Genius and John C. Oxley's Flying Jazz.
Legendary Arlington Park bugler Joe Kelly will be tooting his own horn, literally and figuratively, this Saturday on WLS-AM 890 from 7:30-8 a.m.
Kelly will talk about his career as a bugler and his long association with Arlington Park.
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